Volta Trucks reveals its full-electric 7.5- and 12-tonne Volta Zero variants

Volta Trucks, the leading and disruptive full-electric commercial vehicle manufacturer and services provider, has revealed the forthcoming 7.5- and 12-tonne Volta Zero variants – the second product family in its full-electric vehicle range.

The 7.5- and 12-tonne Volta Zeros have been designed by Volta Trucks’ partner, Astheimer Design in Warwick, UK alongside Volta Trucks’ own engineering teams.

The new full-electric vehicles bear a close but evolutionary visual relationship to the larger 16-tonne vehicle which is now undergoing extensive engineering development and testing ahead of customer evaluation during 2022.

The 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicles will be visually identical at the front, with the 12-tonne vehicle having a longer chassis and body, and second set of rear wheels and tyres, to accommodate the increased vehicle payload.

The 7.5-and 12-tonne models carry over the principles of the innovative cab and premium working environment for drivers.

The vehicle’s ground-up design, without the traditional internal combustion engine, has enabled designers and engineers to completely rethink truck design in this segment. The driver of a Volta Zero has a wide 220-degrees of direct vision around the vehicle.

This panoramic view of the surroundings through a glasshouse-style cab is designed to deliver a Transport for London five-star Direct Vision Standard rating for optimum visibility and the reduction of blind spots.

The protection of vulnerable road users is also enhanced by the use of rear-view cameras that replace traditional mirrors, a 360-degree birds-eye camera showing the driver their complete surroundings, and blind-sport warning systems that detect objects down the sides of the vehicle.

Without the legacy internal combustion engine, the driver of a Volta Zero sits far lower than in a conventional truck, with their eye-line at around 1.8 metres.

This mirrors the height of pedestrians and other road users nearby for easy visual communication. And thanks to the Volta Zero’s innovative central driving position, the driver can enter and exit the vehicle on either side, always onto the pavements for their own safety, and through sliding rather than swinging doors to also ensure the safety of passing cyclists

The new 7.5- and 12-tonne Volta Zero will also change the experience and workspace for drivers. With near-silent operations and minimised cognitive overload, thanks to a intuitive dashboard and interfaces, the driving experience is more akin to a premium car than today’s traditional commercial vehicle.

The ground-up development of the 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicles is being delivered at the same industry-leading pace as other vehicle developments. Having confirmed the start of the project in December 2021, a Pilot Fleet of vehicles is expected to be launched for customer trials in 2024, with series production due to commence in early 2025.

The forthcoming 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicles will make a significant contribution to the company’s objective to sell over 27,000 per year by 2025 and increasing in the years beyond.

Revealing the new 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicle range, Essa Al-Saleh, Chief Executive Officer of Volta Trucks, said; “The forthcoming 7.5- and 12-tonne models complete the full-electric Volta Zero product family. They’ll sit alongside our 16-tonne vehicle, that’s currently engaged in extensive testing ahead of the first customer use later this year, and the 18-tonne vehicle that will start production in mid-2023.

“Our customers tell us that they really appreciate the safety and zero-emission attributes of the 16-tonne Volta Zero, but also need smaller 7.5- and 12-tonne vehicles in their operations. Our engineering teams are now scaling rapidly to be able to deliver all four vehicles at pace, as our customers ask of us.”

Market overview

Product segment specifics

  • Usually, these smaller trucks are not operated in Long-haul or Construction traffic segments. They are the backbone of B2B and B2C Urban transport – from distribution centers and depots to the points of sale (i. e. stores, supermarkets etc.)
  • Their smaller dimensions are – in general – the reason for choosing a 7.5/12t, especially in some designs of city centre with tight, narrow streets.
  • 7.5 / 12 t trucks are N2 class vehicles with potentially lower insurance costs compared to N3 class vehicles like our 16/18 t trucks.
  • In Germany, you can drive a 7.5 t truck with an old ‘3er’ Passenger Car driving license. This ended with European harmonisation on BE, C1E and CE licenses, but a few ‘older’ drivers still have that chance.
  • In some EU markets, there is a truck ban on Sundays and bank holidays for all trucks above 7.5 t – hence, if you want to operate your business 7 days / week, you have to opt for a 7.5 t truck
  • In Amsterdam’s inner city, there is a general weight limit of 7.5 t for all vehicles – any other truck / GVW requires special permits. This is to protect the old streets and bridges
  • Last but not least, the speed limit on German interurban roads is 80 m/h for vehicles with less than 7.5 t GVW – and 60 km/h for all heavier vehicles

About the Volta Zero

The Volta Zero is the world’s first purpose-built full-electric 16-tonne vehicle designed for urban logistics, reducing the environmental impact of freight deliveries in city centres. Designed from the ground up with an operating pure-electric range of 150 – 200 kms (95 – 125 miles), the Volta Zero will eliminate an estimated 1.2M tonnes of CO2 by 2025.

Safety is also at the heart of Volta Trucks, with its ambition of producing the safest trucks for our cities. The Volta Zero was designed for electric from the outset, which facilitates a step-change in vehicle, driver and pedestrian safety. Thanks to the removal of the internal combustion engine, the operator of a Volta Zero sits in a central driving position, with a much lower seat height than a conventional truck.

This combination, plus a glass house-style cab design, gives the driver a wide 220-degrees of visibility, minimising dangerous blind spots. The prototype Volta Zero was launched in September 2020, with the first vehicles expected to be operating with customers in mid-2022.

In November 2021, Volta Trucks announced Europe’s largest purchase of full-electric trucks with DB Schenker’s order of 1,470 vehicles. This followed Petit Forestier’s order of 1,000 Volta Zeros. Volta Trucks now has a total order bank of around 6,000 vehicles, with an order bank value of circa €1.3 billion.

About Volta Trucks

Volta Trucks is a scale-up full-electric commercial vehicle manufacturer and services company. Volta Trucks’ Head Office is in Stockholm, Sweden, with its engineering led from the UK, and forthcoming manufacturing facility in Steyr, Austria. The company also has sales teams across France, Spain, Italy, Germany, and the UK. Volta Trucks is partnering with a number of global leaders in the supply chain for the development and production of the Volta Zero.

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